One of the lovely bouquets being made by Sarah Meeson
One of the lovely bouquets being made by Sarah Meeson

A FLORIST who had 48 wedding bookings postponed this year because of the coronavirus lockdown is trying to look on the bright side of life and has begun limited deliveries to customers.
Sarah Meeson, who runs Vintage Essence, in Galgate, Barnard Castle, said before the lockdown last month, she was keeping busy and focusing on Mother’s Day.
She added: “Normally business from Mother’s Day keeps me right for about three months, so I was just focussing on that. It is a scary time for everyone and from one day to the next I didn’t know if I’d be getting deliveries. When the lockdown was announced I had loads of calls from couples postponing their weddings. It was awful and it’s so upsetting for them and I’ve had people in tears on the phone.
“Everything until August is postponed and we’ve managed to rebook things for next year. I’ve only had one outright cancellation.
“Our wholesalers have taken such a hit this year with cancelled events and it is inevitable that their prices will be going up next year, but I’ll have to take the hit because the quotes I’ve given people are on this year’s flower prices.”
Many couples have been able to rebook their big days for next year.
She added: “You can’t say no. I’ve got one weekend with seven weddings on. Luckily they are all pretty local so I should be able to manage. It is a tough time for everyone. I just miss the social interaction of the shop with people coming in and out.”
Although her shop may be shut for the time being, she is offering a limited, twice-a-week delivery service of blooms up and down the dale.
She added: “I’m doing all the arranging at home so I don’t have to open up the shop and keeping things to a minimum – that’s why I’m only ‘opening two days a week’. I’ll do all the arrangements the day before and then I’ll be out delivering on Tuesday and Saturday. I’m still doing tribute [funeral] flowers because that is so important at the moment – being able to do something nice as a comfort to people who can’t be at the service. I’m trying to keep it simple and I’ve scoured the web for the best deals on flowers and I’m going to plan to get the best suitable stems.
“I’m really lucky I’ve got great family and friends that are keeping a check on me.”
There are three pre-order options available – flower wraps at £20, bouquets at £25 and £35 and Hatboxes at £25 and £30. Deliveries will be made on Tuesdays and Saturdays. To get in touch, contact Sarah Meeson on 07455 302325.